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Which Is Your Favorite Reloading Manual?

  • Hornady

    Votes: 1 6.7%
  • Lee

    Votes: 5 33.3%
  • Lyman

    Votes: 4 26.7%
  • Nosler

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Sierra

    Votes: 2 13.3%
  • Speer

    Votes: 3 20.0%
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was simply curious as to which reloading data manuals people prefer. I am also writing a FAQ article for the CZ Forum, and I wanted to present a more balanced view.

If I left out a someone's favorite, let me know. I tried to limit the options to the "majors," rather than ones that are too product specific (i.e. Barnes).

Finally, I didn't list specific editions. They don't change that much, and I assume that many of us have not seen the new Hornady and Lyman offerings.
 

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Since 03-15- 2002
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There are some good ones. I'm partial to the Speer. It came with the initial RCBS kit. The loads have never failed me & it is packed with geewhiz neat to know usefull info. Only drawback is it is driven to Speer bullets. Ie. tha don't have cast lead data for .38's, they show their swaged and jacketed projectiles. A minor inconvienience.
 

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I like the wider range of bullet types, loads, powders, etc. with Lee.

I find with Speer and Hornady ( Icall them specialty manuals) tend to push their own products in the loads too much.

I do, however, refer to those two quite a bit if I am loading rifle loads and use their bullets. Speer's load data for the 30.06 is what cracked my rifle stock though my loads were well within their recommended specs. It could've been they are a tad too not or the stock already had a micro crack in it...I'm not sure which yet.

Both Lee and and the specialty manuals have their applications. But, overall I do prefer Lee.
 

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none of them is my favorite. i have 8 or 9 manuals and at least a dozen of the powder manufacturers brochures with data in them, and not a single one comes close to meeting my needs. so i vote none of them .
 

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You use the "seat of the pants" reloading or go by recoil, gun damage or muzzle blast? I suppose just filling the case of a 30.06 with Red Dot is a good place to start and then work down? I cant imagine NOT consulting any brochure or manual before reloading. I compare ALL new loads with all the information I have at my fingertips and then make and educated guess.

Just curious Lefty O, if you dont consult them for your needs, what are your needs?
 

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didnt say i dont use the manuals. just that none of them agree with each other. the manuals are all very incomlete with too much outdated data. according to sierra's latest manual you can push 155gr bullet faster out of a 40s&w than you can in a 10mm. figure that one out. been looking lately at the 10mm and the only manual that isnt scared of using the 10mm like it was designed is hornady. so i have no favorite, you have to use them all to find suitable loads for your application. if i didnt use the manuals, i sure wouldnt have as many as i have.:assult: :eek:
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I voted Speer. Based on my own tests (both with and without chronograph), the Speer manual (#13) seems to be the most realistic. I agree that Speer provides the most useful information and loading tips, with the possible exception of Lee's Modern Reloading.
 

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You are right Lefty O about them not agreeing with each other. My brother in law has some old manuals that I have compared with my Lee manual. In almost every case the Lee loads are lighter. There is one load listed that the start grains is max in the Lee manual. I think its for a .357?
I guess thats what makes reloading fun. You have to sort through all this junk and figure it out yourself. Just pick a manual and start somewhere!
 

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I like the Lee as I find the format easier to use and more logically arranged. FWIW the second edition is a little different than the first. It contains some new loads, different calibers, and in the case of the 7.62x54r actual data for the cartridge rather than data for a similar sized cartridge. The new Hodgdon manual looks pretty good as well but I haven't bought it yet.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I would also recommend the 2nd edition of Lee's Modern Reloading, even if you have the 1st ed. I seriously doubt that I will ever get the Hornady 6th ed., since I get tired of paying for the second volume, which I never use.
 

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I agree FEG, both of the Lee manuals are excellent especially when you look at the price compared to most of the others. I think my next manual will be the Vhitavourri even though their powders are kind of hard to come by in my area.
 
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